Peter Pan Syndrome

It is a modern tragedy that so many people in the expat bubble suffer from this chronic disorder. Symptoms include refusing to grow up, putting off further education, blowing a large disposable income on sins, abstaining from investing in a house or car, rejecting a walk down the aisle or familial prospects.

Hong Kong's adult playground, Lan Kwai Fong

That being said, Peter Pan Syndrome has its benefits. These include embracing spontaneous travel, choosing a new adventure each day, having time to catch up on all those back episodes of Walking Dead you’ve been putting off, indulging yourself and buying that new Kate Spade wallet you’ve had your eye on because it’s not like you have to spend your salary on your kids.

Friends from every corner of the Earth 
living in an expat bubble

I am in a bubble where time stands still. My friend group varies in age by about 15 years because age doesn’t matter when we are all really at the same point in life. Single, energetic, detached, motivated professionals. A lucky few are in on the secret of the expat bubble, but once you reach the inner circle, it feels like time stands still. My friends on the outside are growing up whilst us in the expat bubble remain in a hedonistic cycle of lavish vacations and champagne brunches.

Ya hear?

On the show Parks and Recreation, Tom and Donna have an annual ‘Treat Yo Self’ day where they splurge on luxury goods and spa treatments. Whenever I watch that now, I can’t help but think of how lucky I am that I can get a cheap massage pretty much whenever I want in Hong Kong. For a lot of international teachers, it’s fun for awhile but then they feel the need to get back to the ‘real world.’ They marry and move back home and buy property and move on with their life. Even if that is my inevitable path, I’ll be happy knowing that at one point in my life, every day was Treat Yo Self Day.


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